Brian is a ten-year-old male African America. He is a second borne in a family of three. He lives with his parents who have been married for ten years. Brian's father is a dentist while his mother is a business person. She owns a grocery store where she has three employees to assist her. Brian attends school and is one of the top students in his class. He is also very responsible. Thus, his teacher has given him extra duties in class, and he has earned the respect of all his peer and teachers. This case study focuses on Brian.
Physical and Social Environment
The social environment in which a child grows can affect physical and social development. Social environment includes the social relationships and interactions with the child and around him. Having supportive parents contributes to a child's ability to cope with life in childhood, teenage and adulthood. The elements in the social environment include the physical environment, community resource, and social relationships. Under the physical environment, the facilities considered are housing, education, health care, and recreation among others. Brian lives with his parents in a four bedrooms house in a safe neighborhood. The parents own the home they live in, and their neighbors are friendly.
He attends one of the best private schools in the area. Apart from offering excellent quality education, the schools also provide numerous extra-curriculum activities like swimming, taekwondo, soccer, table tennis, great tennis and golf among others team. Here, he has also intensified his teamwork skills and enhanced his confidence. Hence, Brian has developed his abilities in swimming and soccer. He is in the school`s swimming team. Children at Brian`s school are picked and dropped at their premises by a school bus. The driver of the bus has been working at the school for many years. Hence, the parents get the assurance of the safety of their children. Being a doctor, Brian's father has invested in his family's health care. The family medical cover is through a private health insurance company.
Community resources include the governance of the region, community structures and other resources in the community. Living in an elite environment comes with its advantage. Though resources in society are always scarce, Brian has been lucky not to experience scarcity of resources essential for a child`s development. Since his birth, his parents had good jobs hence they never lacked anything and still lived in the suburbs. Therefore, parents have always met his physical needs. This may have facilitated his wellbeing. Brian`s parents own a car hence the children do not have to walk anywhere.
Brian`s parents have developed various social relationships. They are a member of the community club. Thus, Brian interacts with friends who are children of his parent's relations during social events like dinners and club activities. From observation, Brian relates well to the children. The right social network may have facilitated Brian`s healthy behavior. Brian's parents do not smoke but are drink alcohol on social occasions. This culture is desirable as Brian`s chances for learning these vices in the home are unlikely. Hence, the will grow to be morally responsible.
Importance of Positive Social Environment
Stability of neighborhood is essential to a child's development. For instance, if a family keeps on moving in different homes in various areas, their children do not get a chance to form healthy relationships. The migration affects their social development and ability to interact with other people especially peers. Also, the lack of supportive relationships affects their education. Also, these children who live in the sanitary environment are likely to have better social traits. Hence, since Brian`s family lived in a stable home in an established neighborhood, he had developed good social behavior.
Brian is close to his parents. However, he relates to his father more. When his father is free, Brian is always with him. The household uses English to communicate. Their conversations are respectful. All members of the family are polite to each other. Since his reading is excellent, Brian can read on his own. His favorite books are about nature. He mostly likes learning about animals. Regarding culture, the family does not practice any unique way of life. They dress in regular America clothing that does not necessarily tell their origin.
Social Interactions between Children and How Issues of Race Class and Gender and Culture Mediate This Interaction
Race class, gender, and culture have an impact on children`s social interactions. These factors affect how children form and maintain relationships. Also, it impacts on the learning of children. The young ones learn through interacting with others. They do this as they play, communicate, and internalize their families` way of life. Children get an education on gender roles, issues about race and the norms of society. One of the methods of determining in children is through imitation and observation.
According to Albert Bandura, in his social learning theory, the children learn behavior through observation (Mcleod, 2016). The children later perfect the art by imitating. Eventually, the action becomes a way of life. In the community, there are many models that children learn practices. The people include parents, teachers, peers, the media and other members of society. The models become examples to the children as they observe and imitate. Some of the everyday habits involved in learning include gender roles and antisocial behavior among others. For instance, in ordinary cases, a female child will watch how the mother behaves. In the process, they develop a desire to imitate. Thus, female children are seen playing with dolls and utensils.
On the other hand, male children observe their fathers. They learn how to use tools and act like the man in the house. However, there some instances where learning happens from the opposite sex parent. However, societal influence is vital in shaping child conduct. From an early age, children through the process of acculturation, develop the knowledge of what the society expects of their gender. Hence, it is more likely that a child will build gender roles from the same-sex parent.
Bandura states that a child is likely to learn from people who are similar to them (Mcleod, 2016). These include those who share the same interests and are of the same gender. The presence of rewards reinforces the behavior. Likewise, the promise of punishment affects response to learning. The likelihood of rewards facilitates learning. Awards may be in the form of materials and praises. Hence, a child who gets praises is likely to repeat the behavior. The fear of punishment discourages unwanted behavior.
Therefore, a child who grows in a healthy physical and social environment is more likely to imitate positive behavior. For instance, Brian our focal child grew in an area where morals were very high. Also, his parents live in a friendly neighborhood which was clean. The area upheld high morals. Hence, this could have been the reason why Brian was obedient and responsible. Also, he had good behavior, and his peers and teachers had a liking for him. He also learned to appreciate sports that were common in the club that his father had a membership. There was a high chance that Brian would grow to be like his father and friends since these were his usual associates. Also, Brian was in the company of his father mostly. Thus chances of developing male associated gender roles were very likely.
The social learning theory can be used to understand how children form. Children can learn both positive and negative acts through observation. Thus, the people they interact are critical to a behavior development. Teachers should understand these dynamics to handle each child properly. Since out of school interaction for children differ, their way of life may vary depending on the source of learning. For instance, children from communities with vast racial disparities are likely to have these influence in their interactions even in school. On the other hand, children from integrated communities are more likely to embrace diversity and inclusiveness in their communications. Hence as the children grow, they adopt the same ideologies that their community practice.
Culture is the way of life of the people. The process of acculturation is essential for developing the norm. An effective method that children learn culture is through observation. For instance, modernized children learn to dress similar to their associates. One of the most influential social interaction is the media. Children observe how the media personalities talk, walk, dress among other things and identify with their behavior. Children are seen imitating how the celebrities speak and dress. Children also adopt the beliefs of their best personalities. Hence, the programs children watch may influence their conduct. However, some of the materials and picture in televisions and internet are not good in forming healthy behavior. Hence, children are prone to learning antisocial behavior. Therefore, the parents must regulate the use of media and technology, being one of the sources of interaction with children today.
Overall, the physical and social environment influence a child`s behavior. Hence, the elements that are available in the Surrounding either mold behavior positively or negatively. Physical and social environment include the dwelling of a child, the economic activities and level of income of the parent and social interactions among others. Issues of gender, culture, and race that are inherent in a child`s social networks are likely to affect child beliefs. According to social learning theory, Children learn by observation and then imitate the behavior. Children may have reinforced behavior through the presence of rewards and punishment. Rewards encourage behavior while penalty discourages reap of action. After observing Brian who was the focal child of the study, several issues were evident. His excellent behavior and motivation in his studies may have been because his parents provided for all his needs without fail. Also, he interacted with people who were of high status, thus learning attitudes that facilitate performance. Thus, the chance of his growing to be a great person is high. Therefore, social interactions between children and issues of race class and gender and culture mediate their interaction.
Mcleod, S. (2016, February 05). Social Learning Theory. Retrieved from https://www.simplypsychology.org/bandura.html
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